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Hillshire Farm Naturals review: Delicious newcomer to the lunch meat case

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Hillshire Farm recently added a delicious new choice in deli-style lunch meat products with their Naturals line of minimally processed turkey and ham slices, which contain no added nitrates or nitrites and are very low in fat, calories and carbs.

The Hillshire Farm Naturals turkey and ham are well packaged and maintain an appealing moistness and texture. Since I don't eat much bread, I enjoy the full flavor of lunch meats without anything getting in the way. The lunch meats come in sealed plastic bags inside lidded plastic bowls. I prefer buying lunch meats that come in bowls with lids because it's easy to keep the meat sealed in the fridge after it's been opened to retain freshness.

For taste testing the Hillshire Farm Naturals lunch meats, I first tried them straight up, with no accompaniment, and found all of them delicious. Then, I tried them dipped in brown mustard and rolled up with jarred peperoncini. Later, I rolled up turkey and ham with slices of havarti cheese. My family found the Hillshire Farm Naturals lunch meats yummy no matter how we ate them. You'll definitely want to try them however you eat lunch meat, with or without bread, pitas or wraps.

The Hillshire Farm Naturals Slow Roasted Turkey Breast slices have a pleasant turkey flavor, with a three-slice serving containing 45 calories, one-half gram of fat, 10 grams of protein, less than a grab of carbohydrates and 490 milligrams of sodium. I didn't detect any saltiness, and the turkey definitely didn't taste overly processed.

Tasty Turkey
Tasty Turkey Beth McIntire

Tasty Turkey

My family did not detect a huge taste difference between the Hardwood Smoked Turkey Breast and Slow Roasted Turkey Breast. Both had a very nice, fresh-from-the-deli flavor with no note of excessive processing or spicing. The Naturals line offers a distinctly short ingredients list, too - with the Hardwood Smoked Turkey Breast containing just turkey breast, turkey broth, and 2 percent or less of salt, dried vinegar, carrageenan (a food additive extracted from seaweed), sugar, cultured celery juice powder and natural flavor.

Three slices of Naturals Hardwood Smoked Turkey Breast contain 50 calories, one-half gram of fat, 10 grams of protein, less than a gram of carbs and 490 milligrams of sodium.

Black Forest Ham
Black Forest Ham Beth McIntire

Black Forest Ham

I'm a big fan of deli ham, and Hillshire Farm didn't disappoint. Black Forest describes a method of dry curing smoked ham, its name coming from the Black Forest region of Germany. Per three-slice serving, Naturals Black Forest Ham contains 50 calories, 1.5 fat grams, 500 milligrams of sodium and 9 grams of protein. With less than a gram of carbs per serving, the Black Forest Ham along with either of the Naturals turkey products would make delicious lunches or snacks for low-carb eating plans.

Honey Roasted Ham
Honey Roasted Ham Beth McIntire

Honey Roasted Ham

The Hillshire Farm Naturals Honey Roasted Ham also tasted fantastic, with its touch of honey adding just a slight note of sweetness. A three-slice serving of Naturals Honey Roasted Ham contains 70 calories, 2.5 fat grams, 520 milligrams of sodium, 8 grams of protein and 3 grams of carbohydrates.

Hillshire Farm provided me with free containers of each of the products in their new Naturals line in return for my honest review, and it was truly a pleasure for my family to taste test these delectable lunch meats.

One of the challenges I've found in following a low-carb eating plan has been finding quick and easy lunches, and I often turn to rolled up deli ham or turkey, dipping it in brown mustard and sometimes adding low-fat cheese. It takes an especially savory deli meat product to carry lunch on its own, without bread, pita or other padding. All of the Hillshire Farm Naturals products fit the bill nicely and will likely grace my lunch box many times in the future. I also use sliced ham in recipes, such as my low-carb ham and broccoli quiche.

You'll soon find Hillshire Farm Naturals lunch meat at your favorite grocery stores alongside other lunch meat products. They'll make a delightful addition to your lunches and picnics whether you eat them alone or in sandwiches or wraps.

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